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Chemical plants to be moved out of Guangzhou
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Chemical and polluting companies in the Guangdong provincial capital will be moved out of urban areas over the next eight years, the city's deputy mayor said yesterday.

"In total, 279 firms will be moved, 119 of which will go before 2010," Gan Xin said.

The move is part of the city's urban reconstruction plan launched in December, he said.

Most of the relocated companies will be replaced by service industries.

Those to be moved include a number of large-scale, State-owned firms such as the Guangzhou Paper Group Ltd and the Guangzhou Baiyunshan Jigong Pharmaceutical Co Ltd, Gan said.

The companies to be moved were named by the municipal government after more than two years of study.

They were chosen for violating national and local environmental protection regulations relating to emissions, sewage, noise and solid waste, and seriously affecting people's living conditions, the deputy mayor said.

Companies that correct their polluting habits within a set period of time will be exempted, he said.

Chemical factories and warehouses in urban areas that are unable to meet work safety and urban planning regulations have also been included in the scheme.

Of the 119 firms to be relocated by 2010, 48 of them are chemical companies, while 53 are State-owned enterprises.

A further 160 companies will be moved out of the urban district by 2015, 59 of them chemical firms.

Gan said the government will provide about 200 million yuan ($28 million) to help the firms relocate and build new factories for them in 11 industrial development zones in Zengcheng, Huadu, Conghua and Nansha districts, which are far from the city's urban areas.

The area vacated by the firms will be used for developing the service industry, Gan said, with the real estate industry excluded from using the land.

"The urban district has expanded significantly over the past two decades, so that factories and chemical plants that were once located outside it are now included within it," Li Xin, deputy director of the Guangzhou municipal environment protection bureau, said.

He said the relocated factories in the industrial development zones should be managed to prevent polluting their new environment.

(China Daily, February 19, 2008)

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